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Claire Zulkey (born April 15, 1979, in Evanston, Illinois) is an American writer, a 2001 graduate of Georgetown University,[1] and the Northwestern University Creative Writing Masters program.[2] She lives in Chicago, Illinois.

She is the author of the young adult book An Off Year published by Dutton in 2009 and selected by Indie Booksellers for the Autumn 2009 Kids' Indie Next List[3] and cited as one of the ALA's 2010 Best Books for Young Adults.[4][5] It was received positively, with Kirkus Reviews writing "Teens who have doubted the high-school–college-life progression for even a moment will recognize themselves in Cecily, perhaps to their parents’ dismay."[6] and Publishers Weekly describing it as "a candid first novel filled with funny-smart, true-to-life observations and dialogue"[7] She states that the book, based loosely on her own experiences, took over 10 years to write.[8]

Zulkey has published the blog since 2002. In 2011 NPR affiliate WBEZ began producing the site.[9] The blog features humor writing and interviews with performers and authors. In 2006, The Smoking Gun cited Zulkey's interview[10] with James Frey in its report A Million Little Lies.[11] Zulkey is also a contributor at The A.V. Club[12] and the Los Angeles Times.[13] Zulkey produces the Chicago literary humor reading series Funny Ha-Ha,[14] which describes itself as "The Best Reading in Chicago. Ever." Chicago Magazine has rated it one of the 10 best literary salons in Chicago.[15]


  1. ^ "Flak Magazine".
  2. ^ "Northwestern University: Grad Profiles". Archived from the original on 2011-11-06.
  3. ^ "An Off Year". IndieBound. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  4. ^ "2010 Best Books for Young Adults". Young Adult Library Services Association. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  5. ^ Kloberdanz, Kristin. "Review: "An Off Year" by Claire Zulkey". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 3 March 2011.
  6. ^ "An Off Year". Kirkus Media LLC. 1 August 2009. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  7. ^ "An Off Year". PWxyz LLC. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  8. ^ "Chicago Author Spotlight: Claire Zulkey". Chicagoist. Archived from the original on April 3, 2012. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  9. ^ Justin Kaufmann. "WBEZ to add new writers to blog network".
  10. ^ "". Retrieved December 1, 2011.
  11. ^ "A Million Little Lies". The Smoking Gun. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  12. ^ Phipps, Keith. "A.V. Club contributor Claire Zulkey publishes first novel". Retrieved July 13, 2010.
  13. ^ "Claire Zulkey - The Daily Beast". Retrieved March 3, 2011.
  14. ^ Luke Wilusz. "Chicago literary humor reading series Funny Ha-Ha". The Columbia Chronicle. Archived from the original on January 19, 2013. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  15. ^ Obaro, Tom. "10 Great Literary Salons to Check Out in Chicago". Chicago Magazine. Retrieved 17 March 2019.

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